Recently I’ve had two close friends die from drowning. I don’t know if this has anything to do with what I am feeling, but lately I have been experiencing out of body experiences through out the day. Someone will be talking to me, say at dinner, and It feels as though my spirit has detached itself to the right of my body and I am watching myself at the table. It only happens for about thirty seconds, but it actually leaves me in a state of confusion and fear. It happened when I was driving once too and I had to pull over because I was so confused on what was happening.
This has happened a few times in the past, and i Went to a healer and she said my soul has trouble staying grounded and advised me to meditate and carry around obsidian stone. I didn’t think too much of it at this point. I was skeptical of spirituality. Now it’s happening more than ever and I feel like I don’t belong here. I keep having dreams of myself as a warrior figure in another realm and wake up feeling like I’m supposed to be someone else, not in this body on this planet.
I keep looking at my body and it doesn’t seem real to me. It doesn’t sdeem like mine. All of this around me on the earth is beautiful , but I have this overwhelming sense that I’m done serving my time here and it’s time for me to go somewhere else.
I have no idea where these thoughts are coming from. I feel crazy. Sorry if this all sounds a little far-fetched.
Does anyone have any insight for me? Or have any idea what this could all mean? I literally feel like I’m going mad.
@kushkitty, Try to just relax and not freak out about it. How long ago did this start happening? I’ve had a similar experience that comes to mind and freaked me out too for a while. I think it was related to smoking weed but to this day am not really sure what triggered it because it never happened while I was actually high. I suspect it was related though because I hadn’t smoked in almost a year and then got extremely high on my birthday and it started happening a couple days later.
The episodes would start randomly for seemingly no reason at all. Basically all my physical stimulation would be paused for a moment, sometimes as long as 10-20 seconds. My body and mind felt like they were on mute even though my consciousness was intact and I knew something was off. But like you I felt confused and could just stare through my eyes like windows, I couldn’t even perceive the feeling of my eyeballs. Was like a trance state. I only smoked that one night and this kept randomly happening a couple times per day for a week or so after.
I remember walking to work down 42nd St. in manhattan and it began to happen and for an entire block it felt like I was walking in a dream. I couldn’t feel my feet hitting the ground or people I brushed past; I felt very disconnected but aware that I was disconnected and watching myself move as if on auto-pilot.
Another time as I got home from work. I reached to turn the door handle right as it was happening and couldn’t tell if my wrist even turned or not. I had to look down at my hand and see myself turn it before I knew what I was doing because the physical stimulation just wasn’t there. Usually as soon as I would shift my visual focus/attention to the body part lacking stimulation, it would return within a few seconds.
The only other example I can compare it to is like 10 years earlier when I would run the mile in gym class. I was pretty fit as a kid and competitive, so I would push myself pretty hard. I jogged all of it and would sprint the last ~200m. But on a couple runs I specifically remember my body going into that same numb state during my final sprint. I’m not sure if I was overworking myself or depleting my brain of oxygen or what would have caused it but it was like running on mute through a cloud. Couldn’t hear my footsteps on the track or even feel my breathing. Was completely disconnected from physical sensation until I passed the finish line and laid down and 30-60 seconds later I’d be back intact. I’ve never passed out before, but it seems like this feeling would come before something like that.
My own research after the most recent incidents led me to believe it was depersonalization or some type of dissociation. But it seems hard to pinpoint the exact problem or reason. In any case the prognosis was that it was mostly a mind over matter thing and patients recover on their own at their own rates. This helped me relax a little and I decided not to go see a doctor and just wait things out. They stopped happening after a week or two and haven’t happened once since (about 2 years now).
So my advice would be to just not freak out too much about this and give it some time to see if it corrects itself. I’m as curious as you though as to what could be the cause or why it’s happening. Especially if this persists more than a month or seriously interferes with your activites, then I would see someone right away.
In some ways I still feel dissociated from my physical body, emotions and ego. But I think that’s more from continued weed smoking and psychedelic use. I certainly don’t hold it against Mary even if she was the culprit for my week of surprises. In some ways I am grateful for that experience of dissociation, it really lets you sit back and look at yourself from an outside perspective, even if it’s a little overwhelming. I remember the first day it happened I was really freaked out and then some of the last episodes I was actually almost enjoying it, like “Okay, here we go, lets explore this feeling for the next 20 seconds and then I’ll be okay again” I like your healer’s description, that seems to make the most sense–your soul not staying grounded. You’ll be okay :) Let us know how it goes.
@cptsleeze, I have done a lot of hallucinogenics like acid, mushrooms, salvia, ecstasy, MDMA, 2-cb back in the day. I have been eight months sober from every type of drug use, and barely drink. That is why I am so confused why this is happening. I have experienced ego-death from an acid trip once and it was very enlightening, but scary at the same time. So be careful, do everything in moderation.
@versai, OH my goodness, reading your experiences gave me shivers. That is a perfect way of explaining it. “My body and mind felt like they were on mute even though my consciousness was intact and I knew something was off. But like you I felt confused and could just stare through my eyes like windows, I couldn’t even perceive the feeling of my eyeballs.”
So you say it’s mind over matter? I can’t really make it stop happening, I’ve tried. Was there anything you did that really helped?
I would say smoking or any type of drug use would cause it, but I’ve been sober for almost a year now. Do you think it’s more of a medical thing or a spiritual thing?
@kushkitty, Honestly have no idea. I was sober while it happened too and it always happened at different times in random circumstances. Never expected it and wasn’t ever able to consciously control it with my mind and make it go away. I just mean mind over matter like have faith that you’re not totally broken and in a couple weeks it should sort itself out overall just like each episode sorts itself out after several seconds. I’m not sure if it’s a medical or spiritual thing, I’d lean more toward a psychology thing. Maybe you’ve been stressed out more than usual lately?
@kushkitty, I’ve had similar experience….to varying degrees at different times in my life, sometimes just a vague feeling of not quite being”here”…other times just as you described being outside my own body…I didn’t ever have thoughts of “my time being up” or not belonging…which I mention to suggest that those are just thoughts, theyseem to make sense because they “match” the overall experience…it’s your minds attempt to make sense of the feeling but they are just thoughts and you should distiguish them as such…meaning, don’t take them seriously. You belong here…maybe you could benefit from some voluntary experience where you choose to help someone…and see how the real experience of “being here” and making some kind of difference to someone contradicts the story your brain is telling…
Anytime I have felt this way has always been connected with grief and loss…after my brother was killed was the most severe episode for me…probably because we were so connected…like losing a part of myself…it felt like I wasn’t really here anymore…It was a horrible feeling but eventually it went away and “I came back”…you can’t help but realize from that experience how real our connection to other people is…it’s not just an idea, we really are connected and not at all our true self in isolation.
You might be interested in a book I’m currently reading called “Waking” by Matthew Sanford…it’s about his experience after an accident…ultimately about healing from trauma and the relationship between mind and body and being present in your body …Its also about his yoga practice …yoga I think would probably be right on target if you want to do something specific to help move it along…
I know what those losses feel like…you’re not alone even when it feels that way…I guess it only makes sense that when life gets “TOO damn REAL” ..we feel disconnected…and when things aren’t very “real” we have no problem with our sense of being connected…pain can drive us outside of ourselves…and love can bring us back where we belong. ..and of course “yes” to giving and receiving love from other people but seriously don’t ignore the fact that you can and need to love yourself, in the sense especially of loving your own “spirit” and calling it back to heal inside your body…You know you have to be “tough” enough to take some hits, but you also have to tell the truth about feeling hurt, I mean to yourself especially, and show yourself some sympathy and compassion
Yes, I feels you. Psychologists dub this phenomena dissociative identity disorder, but that is merely a label to increase pharmaceutical drug sales through something any awake person realizes. Sorry to hear about the death of your friends, but this is likely the trigger– when our minds/souls cannot contain the pain within, they escape it. Floating around near the physical home of your body, our inner selves are temporarily freed of the trauma associated with it. An analogy would be kids hurt by their parents who run away from home; yet after a short period of time they realize their parents home is needed in order to survive and thus return.
I deal with it by playing it up– engage in activities where viewing yourself from the outside is beneficial to who you are. Try things where you are the center of attention (acting, improv, stand-up, musical performances, poetry readings) and your show will rock because you can deeply see how you’re presenting yourself. Become a social butterfly since you’re hyper-aware of your image. Although beware– this “onstage persona” is egomania, so balance it out with quiet, alone time that nurtures your soul.
Welcome to awake-hood: population few; return rate: zero :]
@kushkitty, It’s a way for you to try and escape an unescapable situation. An extreme form of any type of escapism, like addiction or something. A way in which you try to not feel how you feel. It’s not spiritual, I would suggest not trying to justify it as such. It is a common experience among people with really bad anxiety. Sure it’s probably much more complex than your average psychologist will have you believe, but it’s not merely your soul trying to go to another realm or something.
There’s a practical solution: get at the root of your fear. Breathe, feel, listen. That’s what you need to look in to. Are you hiding from feelings or emotions? Do you feel really overwhelmed a lot? Are you so divorced from your feelings that you don’t even realize you are overwhelmed?
@mikeyw829, You know, I have been experiencing very bad anxiety lately, and experienced a panic attack as well. I used to use drugs to escape from the problems I was having and since I am sober, maybe my body is using that as a way to cope. Interesting. Is there a name for this condition? and aside from breathing and getting to the root of things, is there more solutions? and thankyou!
@substratum, That was very helpful. I think I am definitely over thinking the situation. Having two of my good friends pass away is a little much. For some reason, I ‘m not as sad as I think I should be, I just keep experiencing these out of body sessions. Maybe it’s some form of coping. I will most certainly check out that book! My book list is getting so huge from meeting people on HE. Thank you so much for sharing your story and advice. It means so much to me. I am also looking to get involved in some yoga classes, It will probably help with the overwhelming feelings. (: I’m sorry for your loss. I lost my mom too, and I’ve learned all about taking these hits your talking about. You seem like a very strong and kind individual.
@kushkitty, see my comment above, it really sounds like what you are experiencing is ptsd/ shell shock from the events that occurred. I went through ptsd after abuse, and it takes time to regain yourself but it does get better. If you want, you can look into applying dialectic behavior therapy practices into your life, which is similar to what people are saying here since it is based on mindfulness and buddhism concepts but boiled down to targeting the psychological discomfort. There’s a whole bunch of information and other approaches too, and I just wanted to put a name on what you’re possibly feeling because knowledge of yourself is power. I wish you the best :)
@kushkitty, it very much sounds like your are experiencing dissociation from the trauma of your two friends dying. That would be a horrible thing to have happen, and this seems like the appropriate physiological reaction. Existential anxiety. Just give your self time and work on things that are anxiety reducing (i.e. art, exercise, reading, working, meditating, weed, etc.). Im sorry for your loss.
“Having two of my good friends pass away is a little much. For some reason, I ‘m not as sad as I think I should be, I just keep experiencing these out of body sessions”
It seems to me you’re describing the “dynamic” of your experience…just for the possibility that a shift in perspective might be enlightening, I “rewrote” your statement in my mind.to say “I don’t actually feel as sad as I know I am, and it keeps giving me “out of body” sensations”………..well it shifted MY perspective anyway…and suddenly I remember how I grieved the loss of my brother…it’s so normal but also very individual….to NOT feel the grief and sadness …at least for periods of time…or maybe switching from crying to feeling “nothing”…….I was a “switcher”…and the feeling nothing phase was always very uncomfortable….because you only “know” you feel sad, but you can’t feel it…and it makes you wonder why…I remember that “wondering” and all of a sudden I really understand the thoughts you were having………..but it all comes down to being able to feel and express the sadness…you know because the sadness is real and feeling it is being in touch with whats real….not feeling it, for whatever reason, has to give you an “unreal” sensation or experience. So “coping” sounds like what your mind is doing as you said, but I think you wouldn’t need to cope if you could express…if you could cry…
I’m not really telling you anything about YOU, but in thinking of my own grief and resisting it at times…I know what happened and what the result was, so only in that sense I have to tell you …you need to cry…you need to just let yourself feel bad and not be afraid of it…just let yourself cry. I know you want to control it, I remember. But it’s not healthy to repress your sadness. It is healthy to express it. First you have to get in touch with it…..you have to let yourself remember what you are so sad about …
It isn’t just sadness your repressing, it’s also ..or it’s REALLY, the love you have for people who are no longer here…belonging….you want to be where the people you love are. That defines”belonging”. You need to express your love for them here and now in the form of sadness and crying. I know this. When I think of my brother and others I loved and lost, I first think “I loved you”…and I always correct myself with the idea that they are still with me in some way i don’t understand but still “I know”…so I say it again but in the present tense “I love you”….it makes me cry but why wouldn’t I cry..?
@kushkitty i dont think you should use anything external to deal with any issues. death is a hard thing to get over. you may be more effected than you think. your subconscious expresses itself in different ways. i have had people die all around me since i was a kid. a lot of good friends. i understand how you feel. i have not had experiences like that but they manifested in different ways. sometimes it just takes exploration of the self to find out. psychedelics can also play a big factor in combination. when i got sober form doing psychedelics for years i experienced some weird things for about a year or two before i started going back to normal. the brain has to regroup after that stuff. so the combination of things can have a huge impact. if you see yourself in warrior stuff try to find an outlet for that. maybe your brain is trying to tell you something. try MMA. you may like it a lot and aside from the combat part its a really good outlet for extra energy you have. it also forces the mid to focus on the moment at hand instead of everything else.
@kushkitty, The name for the condition is escapism. What you experience firsthand is much more important than the label attached to the condition. Is the main way our species has “avoided” problems for the past thousands of years. It’s like a hardwired aspect of your brain, made stronger through social conditioning. What is more normal than wanting to escape negative environments?
People go so far as to divorce themselves from their negative emotions, to the point where they don’t even feel them anymore. If the tension builds, and you continue to resist feeling this stuff, it can leads to all sorts of mind games, like dissociation and depersonalization. That’s my 2 cents about it at least.
You need to break the conditioning pattern. What do most people do when they get sick? They look for the quick fix, the easy way out that does not account for the reasons they got into the problem in the first place. Indigestion? Here’s an antacid. Anxiety? Aw poor you, here’s a anti-anxiety med. These are merely symptom relievers, though.
It’s really as simple as taking accountability for how you feel. I understand you’ve experienced some traumatic events. But there is no way out but through. Going into the source of the problem. Stop thinking. Stop analyzing. Focus on the feelings and sensations themselves, and the rest will take care of itself. It really is that simple.